Flash Web Design: The v5 Remix

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9780735710986: Flash Web Design: The v5 Remix
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Written from a personal, creative, professional perspective, Hillman drills deep into nine high-profile Flash projects that he¿s created. He explains why and how he designed the project as he did; then he deconstructs and explains step-by-step the major aspects of that project¿s Flash component. All screenshots have been updated to show how each project is create using Flash 5The chapter that drills deeply into ActionScript (Chapter 8, MANIFESTIVAL deconstruction, Understanding Flash ActionScripting), has been rewritten from the ground up to show how this is done in Flash 5¿s considerably changed ActionScripting environment.

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Review:

In Flash Web Design: The v5 Remix, Hillman Curtis places the emphasis firmly on design while he demonstrates the range of techniques that have enabled him to create some of the most compelling Flash movies on the Web.

Curtis is chief creative officer and founder of hillmancurtis, inc., a New York City design firm that has produced stunning Flash work for clients like 3Com, Intel, Hewlett-Packard, and even Macromedia itself.

The book deconstructs nine high-profile Flash projects created for real-life clients. Curtis takes time both in the introductions and throughout the project deconstructions, to emphasise the importance of thinking about and applying design-led principals to the job at hand.

One of the things that makes Curtis successful is his approach to motion, and it's here that the book has the most to offer. Curtis defines what he calls a Global Visual Language "comprised of simple symbology and motion," which makes it possible to communicate a powerful message across cultural barriers.

Projects include designing a $20,000 ad, animating a 3D wireframe and converting video to vectors in order to overcome bandwidth constraints. In the penultimate chapter, Todd Purgason provides an indispensible guide to producing print-based client presentations using FreeHand.

As a tutorial, the book is less successful. The project deconstructions take the form of numbered walk-throughs with accompanying illustrations and screen shots. The design is busy, and the lack of a CD showing finished projects makes it difficult to know what you're working towards.

But, for an insight into what makes Flash motion work and how you can put it to good use, this is a book from which you can learn a great deal. --Ken McMahon, Amazon.co.uk

From the Publisher:

Flash Web Design has always been about design, above all else. Hillman Curtis is a fearless, singular designer; he wanted to share his thought processes and some slice from the core of his creativity with a vital and growing community based around motion graphics design. The fact that Flash is the primary enabling technology behind the book and behind the movement is almost incidental. The fact that Hillman Curtis has, to some degree, become a brand (in the best sense of the word) synonymous with intelligent, innovative Flash design, is not.

In its original version, the book was written during the Flash 4 cycle and released in Spring of 2000. There was no other book like it: A few people didn’t get it (“Where are the actual explanations of the Flash interface?” etc); a lot of people got it passionately. A representative opinion to this regard that we’ve seen recently comes from a designer/Amazon reader who wrote:

“After completing a Flash 5 course, I asked my instructor what would be a good Flash book to purchase. His response was "Hillman Curtis". I didn't regret it. There are books out there dedicated to Action Script, others to the basics, etc. As a designer wanting to build Flash sites, this one was perfect. It covers a lot of "why" when trying to figure out how a site should look and feel. So many flash sites have interaction and animation simply for the sake of movement, with no real reasoning behind it. Fluff with no substance. The examples here go beyond fluff and get to the real.

“The deconstructions are literally step-by-step with explanations along the way. Some examples use software outside of Flash in the preparation stages, but Flash is not an end-all product.

“If you want a reference book on Action Script, this is not it. If you want a good book on design using Flash, get it.”

That pretty much nails it.

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE ORIGINAL BOOK AND THE V5 REMIX:
--All screenshots reflect the Flash 5 interface.
--ActionScripting chapter (#8) has been completely rewritten to reflect the inherent changes in ActionScripting in Flash 5.
--Minimal edits and minor tweaks elsewhere

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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